From dandelion to car tyre
In the recently published final report of the nationwide initiative "Plant Biotechnology of the Future", a project by scientists of the University of Münster has been selected as one of six research highlights of the programme. Between 2011 and 2018, plant researchers from all over Germany worked on 27 projects with 125 subprojects - funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).
In their project, the Münster research group headed by Prof. Dirk Prüfer investigated how the Russian dandelion can be used sustainably to produce raw materials such as latex or rubber. The transfer of research results into industrial applications has already begun: At the end of 2018, the tyre manufacturer Continental has opened a research and testing laboratory to carry out experiments for processing dandelion. The first car tyres made from dandelions could be on the market in five years’ time.
The article about the project was published in the final project report "Highlights of applied plant research", published by the PLANT 2030 Office (in German Language):